Against Beshear's Recommendation, Warren County May Hold In-Person Classes Aug. 24
The Warren County Board of Education will hold a special meeting on Monday to approve a new school reopening plan.
The district had to regroup recently after Gov. Andy Beshearrecommended districts postpone in-person classes until Sept. 28.
In a webcast Friday afternoon, Superintendent Rob Clayton unveiled a compromise proposal that includes a hybrid schedule with both in-person and online instruction. The first day of classes for Warren County students remains Aug. 24. Clayton said the Barren River District Health Department supports his decision to proceed with in-person classes, and added the number of positive COVID-19 cases in Warren County has been declining the past 30 days, according to local data.
“Then why is the narrative that Warren County is a hot spot?," asked Clayton. "Why is the narrative that Warren County and Bowling Green Independent should not open their doors to students? It’s real clear. They’re not looking at the same metrics.”
Warren County’s revised reopening plan includes no changes for students who chose to participate in the virtual academy. Students who chose in-person classes will be separated into two groups. Each group, on a rotating basis, will attend in-person classes two days a week and be home three days a week for virtual instruction.
Students whose last names start with A-J will be placed in the Red Group and will attend in-person classes on Mondays and Wednesdays. They will do virtual learning on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays.
Students whose last names start with K-Z will be in the Blue Group. They will be in their school buildings on Tuesdays and Thursdays with virtual instruction on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. The hybrid schedule is likely to be in place through Oct. 2.
The hybrid model reduces by 50% the number of students and staff in school buildings at one time. Clayton said 70% of families had chosen in-person classes before Beshear issued his recommendation. Clayton cautioned that a rise in COVID-19 cases could close schools completely or they could be ordered to close by the state. However, he said even if schools were open a week it would be a chance for students and teachers to make in-person connections, particularly acclimating kindergartners to the school environment and easing the transition for incoming middle and high school students.
Clayton also announced that masks will now be required for kindergarten students. The mask mandate originally applied to 1st through 12th graders.
The plan goes before the Warren County Board of Education on Monday at 7:00 p.m. at South Warren High School.